Resistin facilitates VEGF-C-associated lymphangiogenesis by inhibiting miR-186 in human chondrosarcoma cells

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Chondrosarcoma is a common primary malignant tumor of the bone that can metastasize through the vascular system to other organs. A key step in the metastatic process, lymphangiogenesis, involves vascular endothelial growth factor-C (VEGF-C). However, the effects of lymphangiogenesis in chondrosarcoma metastasis remain to be clarified. Accumulating evidence shows that resistin, a cytokine secreted from adipocytes and monocytes, also promotes tumor pathogenesis. Notably, chondrosarcoma can easily metastasize. In this study, we demonstrate that resistin enhances VEGF-C expression and lymphatic endothelial cells (LECs)-associated lymphangiogenesis in human chondrosarcoma cells. We also show that resistin triggers VEGF-C-dependent lymphangiogenesis via the c-Src signaling pathway and down-regulating micro RNA (miR)-186. Overexpression of resistin in chondrosarcoma cells significantly enhanced VEGF-C production and LECs-associated lymphangiogenesis in vitro and tumor-related lymphangiogenesis in vivo. Resistin levels were positively correlated with VEGF-C-dependent lymphangiogenesis via the down-regulation of miR-186 expression in clinical samples from chondrosarcoma tissue. This study is the first to evaluate the mechanism underlying resistin-induced promotion of LECs-associated lymphangiogenesis via the upregulation of VEGF-C expression in human chondrosarcomas. We suggest that resistin may represent a molecular target in VEGF-C-associated tumor lymphangiogenesis in chondrosarcoma metastasis.

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